Centre for Journalism undergrads may remember that snippet from the Tom Cruise film Minority Report that I showed them in week one's first lecture. Cruise is a cop on the run from his own police force in the year 2054 and jumps on a tube train. The guy sitting opposite is reading a copy of USA Today, whose splash suddenly updates in front of his eyes to reveal the Cop On the Run story, complete with pictures of the fugitive...
Spielberg's vision was that the updatable enewspaper would have replaced traditional pulp-based ink-on-paper. So far, despite hopes being raised on a number of occasions that scientists would come up with a commercially-viable version of epaper, no such product has appeared. The Guardian now reports on the latest company, Liquavista, to suggest they might be on to something - with a range of products to be unveiled in Hong Kong this month.
Last month Plastic Logic unveiled its own 'business reader', which mimics the look - but not the feel - of the black and white newspaper page. There's a video of it in action on the site.
But with mobile phones already providing plenty of the functionality, and already in most people's pocket's, isn't it an idea whose time has essentially passed? Â